Welfare Errors Hurting Families
North Ayrshire & Arran MP Patricia Gibson has expressed concern that errors and delays are making families go hungry and putting their homes at risk, following a warning from the cross-party Work and Pensions Select Committee.
The MPs on the Committee acknowledged that "parts of the welfare system work well" but also found evidence of "too many errors and too many delays". They also said they were not able to fully scrutinise some benefit delays due to an "unacceptable" lack of information about Employment and Support Allowance (ESA), work capability assessments and mandatory reconsideration clearance times.
The Committee also noted that the DWP had a target for reducing benefit overpayments, but not for underpayments which amounted to £1.5bn in 2014-15.
"This should be remedied immediately as underpayments can have an enormous impact on claimants and their ability to pay for essentials.
"Some people wait up to six weeks to receive their first benefit cheque under universal credit. This is totally unacceptable and can only ensure undue hardship is inflicted on some of our poorest and vulnerable constituents."